F1 »

Hamilton ready for the challenge

Lewis Hamilton ready to fight back form his grid penalty in Shanghai after strong start to Chinese weekend
Lewis Hamilton says he is ready for the challenge of trying to fight for victory in the Chinese Grand Prix after showing strong pace in Friday practice in Shanghai.

The McLaren driver topped the times in the first session on a drying track and then ended FP2 second fastest behind the Mercedes of Michael Schumacher.

With a five-place grid penalty looming due to a gearbox change that will be made before the final session on Saturday, Hamilton's focus will now be on qualifying as high up the grid as possible, with the Briton saying he was ready for the challenge of fighting back through the pack.

“It's been a great day – it stayed dry in the afternoon so we successfully got through our run programme,” he said. “We're still working away to improve the set-up, but the new bits on the car seem to be working: the guys back at the factory have done a great job.

“We look competitive – and I've been particularly focusing on the longer runs for this weekend. We still need to make a few improvements but our car looks good.

“I'll be changing the gearbox on my car before P3. It's going to be a close qualifying session tomorrow – it'll be a good battle and hopefully we can start as high up the grid as possible because I think we'll still be in the race and among the leading group. I love the challenge of coming through and gaining positions.”

Team-mate Jenson Button was sixth quickest in the sister car although he was less happy with his performance on track, having struggled to find a set-up in the low temperatures that affected both sessions.

“It's been a little bit of a difficult day for me,” he said. “I was trying to find a good set-up but the cold weather made it difficult to understand the car because the tyres weren't working perfectly.

“Tomorrow should be a bit warmer than today – we don't quite understand the tyre temperatures and can't get them quite in the right area. And if we make a set-up change and the tyre temp changes by five or 10 degrees, then that change goes out the window.

“That's something for us to sort out, but we've got a lot of useful information from the low- and high-fuel runs. It's been a tricky day but there's a lot of good information to go through – we'll find a better direction overnight.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
13.04.2012 - Free Practice 1, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
13.04.2012 - Free Practice 1, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
13.04.2012 - Free Practice 1, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-27
John Watson driving the McLaren MP4B at the 1982 Caesars Palace Grand Prix, Las Vegas
Guy Moll at the 1934 Grand Prix Automobile de Montreux   [pic credit:Agence de presse Meurisse/Bibliothèque nationale de France]
12.10.2014- Race, Jenson Button (GBR) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
12.10.2014- Race, the start
12.10.2014- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10
12.10.2014- Vitaly Mutko (RUS) Minister of Sport of the Russian Federation
12.10.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014- Race, Kevin Magnussen (DEN) McLaren Mercedes MP4-29
12.10.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 in the press conference after the race
12.10.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 celebrates Manufactor title of Mercedes with the team
12.10.2014- Race, Romain Grosjean (FRA) Lotus F1 Team E22
12.10.2014- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14T
12.10.2014-  Sebastian Vettel (GER) Infiniti Red Bull Racing RB10 with a fan
12.10.2014- Fabiana Flosi (BRA)
12.10.2014- Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.

Stuart - Unregistered

April 13, 2012 1:05 PM

I really like Lewis. I think more drama follows him (for wrong and right reasons) which makes the sport in general more interesting. I mean if it wasn't for him and massa ramming each other off every race how dull would last year have been? The fact he has so many haters and divides opinions means he's far from the standard PR-robot driver. His 'win-it-or-smashing-into-a-tree-trying' seems to have eased off slightly which is a shame, but I guess he's seen Jenson's steady away approach and realised that's the way to score more points.

© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.